(Year of) Dragon in Review

I was watching this totally great webinar pointing out some of the benefits of journaling, and specifically, about chronicling successes and failures, and what was learned.  And I had intended to write this on my birthday, then at the end of the year, and now I see that the most appropriate time is at the end of the Chinese Year — the end of the YEAR OF THE DRAGON.  This is of special note, as my goal for this past year has been to fix, correct, and make AWESOME everything in my life, considering it was the year of the Dragon.  So… what did I do?

  1. Went to Russia (Pic 1)
  2. Asked out almost every girl I was interested in, and learned to accept and tolerate the negative opinions, talk and the avoidance and the weird behavior that results as casualties of a necessary and unavoidable process. Had some pretty horrible dates
  3. Started accepting people for who they are, and understood what it means to be not-idealistic
  4. Competed (and lost) in the qualifiers for the US Open, and in the tournaments before and after that as well
  5. Learned some fairly important life lessons
  6. Gradually reduced my Netflix watching
  7. Took my super-awesome TV (Elena) home to my parents
  8. Started (for like 3 months) learning Wudang Tai Chi , but didn’t keep with it because of my knee (Pic 2)
  9. Injured my other (good) knee
  10. Published some papers & contributed to some research
  11. Went to the Info Theory summer school
  12. Ran a lot of odd experiments (oxygen generator, et al)
  13. Got a final sinus surgery
  14. Went to 3 weddings
  15. Watched the fireworks from a raft on the Charles (Pic 3)
  16. Started getting involved in the entrepreneurial community again, after a long hiatus
  17. Crossed the point with SR where I was able to (finally) confidently hire people; learning how to be a manager
  18. Actually came up with a serious new business model for SR, and did a spectacular amount of analysis to support decisions
  19. Started serious blogging about things I’ve learned, hopefully to add some value for others..
  20. More or less came to terms with my general life failures, and am still working on going on from them.
  21. Started making concerted efforts to improve myself with speed reading, and started working through my vast repository of papers to read (helped by ipad)


I learned that if I get off my butt and actually apply to things, I generally get selected. This is a super-big change over most of the rest of my life, where I used to think, “what’s the point of even applying, I’ll never get chosen anyway”.

Weirdly, it doesn’t actually seem like that much when I write it down in a list. I guess it’s better than doing absolutely nothing at all.